8 Harmful Medical Treatments Used In The Past That Will Shiver You

Harmful Medical TreatmentsHarmful Medical Treatments


Whatever the era it could be, every creature will undergo some health problems. And proper medical treatment is needed. In India, we used to have only Ayurvedic treatment which is safe. The good thing is, these days people are showing interest in Ayurvedic treatment rather than English medical treatment.  However, some methods which were used in other countries are quite strange.

8. Mandrake Fruit Extracts Were Used As Anesthesia


In ancient Egypt, doctors prepared extracts from mandrake fruits. In ancient Mesopotamia, doctors used alcohol and opium together as an anesthesia. In ancient India and China, doctors used juniper, cannabis, and aconite as anesthetic agents.


7. Toothache Was Treated With Smoking Goat Fat


Avicenna who was a Persian polymath recommended smoking the patient with a burning mixture of goat fat, henbane, and onion as a dental treatment. Pliny the Elder who was a Roman author and naturalist believed that the only way to get rid of toothache was catching a toad at midnight, spitting in its mouth, and saying special “curing” words.


6. Chronic Diseases Were Treated With Physical Exercise 


In the times of Hippocrates (460-370 BC), people with epilepsy were believed to be possessed by demons and were treated with prayers and holy water. Skin diseases like psoriasis, were considered incurable. 


5. Mothers Delivered Babies Standing Or Sitting On Their Haunches


Not everyone can posses the knowledge that midwife has. In ancient India, midwife knew how to change the position of the fetus in utero. But, in the medieval period, the ancient knowledge was lost due to the influence of the church. A lot of women and their newborns died during the delivery.


4. Infections Were Cured Using Snake Venom


In ancient Egypt, they used cannabis, opium, and henbane. In the middle ages, doctors added dried snakes and scorpions to their potions. Before antibiotics, doctors treated infections with remedies based on plant poisons and viper venoms.


3. Bloodletting Was The Main Treatment For All Diseases


Bloodletting was very popular in India and Arabic countries. It was popular up to the 19th century. Even George Washington had his tonsillitis cured this way, although he died afterward


2. Some Diseases Were Treated With A Tobacco Smoke Enema


The method of treating with a tobacco smoke enema was adopted from North American Indians. Digestion problems, somnolence, stomach cramps, and parasites were all treated with a tobacco smoke enema.  


1. Doctors Drilled Holes In Patient’s Skull To Cure Headaches


Skull Trephination is the oldest surgical operation and this method was very popular in ancient American civilizations as well as during the Renaissance era. Headaches, epilepsy, and other psychological disorders were cured by drilling holes in patient’s skull.

Don’t you feel these are dangerous treatments? Do you know any other harmful medical practices that were used in olden days? Share us in the comments. Read Surrogacy Ban Law’s Shocking Impacts On Indian Medical Industry

Cover Image

Pavani Bharathula
I am Pavani, stands for highly deterministic, self-motivator, highly individual, independent and bold person; like to inspire and motivate people through my writings and speeches.